Why did the captain do this?

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Old Jul 25, 18, 10:05 am
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Why did the captain do this?

My wife and I boarded DL 1608 ATL-DTW and settled in to F and noticed that the aircraft was a little warm, but not unbearable, When zone 1 was just starting to board the captain stopped people in the jet bridge and then told everyone to collect their belongings and get off the plane because it was too hot. Moments after that the air came on. The captain went up the jet bridge turning people around and one of the flight attendants told everyone to stay seated, that she was going to over rule the captain. She went up the jet bridge, apparently to try to reason with the captain but she was unsuccessful, the captain stormed back from the jet bridge and sternly ordered everyone off the plane.

It was chaos with everyone having to scan off, and about 20 people lined up at the counter trying to rebook flights because they were going to miss their connection. Despite all of the chaos the gate agents and flight attendants performed great and made the best of the really bad situation that the captain created.

I had to call and get re-booked and we ended up having to go through AMS to get to CDG.

Iím sure the captain had a reason for what he did but it clearly wasnít in the best interest of DL or the passengers. Does anyone have any ideas of why he would do this?
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Old Jul 25, 18, 10:33 am
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Originally Posted by LARobinson View Post
Iím sure the captain had a reason for what he did but it clearly wasnít in the best interest of DL or the passengers. Does anyone have any ideas of why he would do this?
Without knowing the reason why he did it, I don't think saying it wasn't in the best interest of DL or the passenger is a fair statement. The pilot is on charge of that aircraft - he's not going to kick people off without a very good reason. Even if that reason is "it's too warm in the cabin without air," when it comes to the health/safety of passengers and crew, that is in their best interest, and it is in Delta's best interest, as they avoid the potential of someone becoming ill or finding themself in medical distress aboard the aircraft, which would just cause more issues for everyone in the long run.
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Old Jul 25, 18, 10:40 am
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I have no idea why an FA would expect to "overrule" the captain. That is bizare.

There is no way to know exactly what the core issue was. It wsa not because the air was off for a few minutes as that is common.

If, for example, the reason was that the elextronics were screwy and he did not feal it safe, would it have been in the best interest of the passengers and DL to fly simply because the aircon came back on?
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Old Jul 25, 18, 10:41 am
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Originally Posted by eastindywalrus View Post
Without knowing the reason why he did it, I don't think saying it wasn't in the best interest of DL or the passenger is a fair statement. The pilot is on charge of that aircraft - he's not going to kick people off without a very good reason. Even if that reason is "it's too warm in the cabin without air," when it comes to the health/safety of passengers and crew, that is in their best interest, and it is in Delta's best interest, as they avoid the potential of someone becoming ill or finding themself in medical distress aboard the aircraft, which would just cause more issues for everyone in the long run.
Actually, the captain is probably the one who knows the least about the cabin. The captain barely spends any time there. It is like asking drivers to rate the comfortability of the backseat of vehicles they have driven. I have no idea, because I never sit in the back of all my rentals.
I wonder if the captain was overreacting. Out of touch.
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Old Jul 25, 18, 10:45 am
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I had a similar situation recently on an LAX-MSP-DCA itinerary. This was the last connection of the day to DCA via MSP. The equipment was a 757 that had arrived from GUA. We boarded at the scheduled time, and the flight was fully loaded and ready to go 15 minutes prior to schedule. While sipping my PDB, the captain got on the horn and indicated that there was an 18 inch hole in the fuselage, and was on the phone to Delta HQ to figure out what to do (apparently, he believed that the plane could fly with this condition). 20 minutes later he told everyone to deplane; DL had a spare 757 at LAX and they were able to use this; however, the delay meant that I would have to overnight at MSP.

When I got off the flight I headed straight for the SkyClub, and the very fine "ambassador" got me rebooked on the next flight to DCA, the redeye via ATL. She got me booked into full F class.

I'm not sure why the GAs in LAX permitted pax to board when the condition of the aircraft should have been verified before boarding commenced.
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Old Jul 25, 18, 11:28 am
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Originally Posted by ND76 View Post
I'm not sure why the GAs in LAX permitted pax to board when the condition of the aircraft should have been verified before boarding commenced.
The FAs must be on board before passengers can board, but I'm not sure that the pilots must be on board. Perhaps in your case the pilots did not complete their exterior checks until after you boarded. With the focus on T-0, I'm sure GAs get a lot of pressure to get the aircraft boarded as quickly as they can.
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Old Jul 25, 18, 11:41 am
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What flight attendant has rank over a pilot?

His wife?
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Old Jul 25, 18, 11:58 am
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Originally Posted by DiverDave View Post
The FAs must be on board before passengers can board, but I'm not sure that the pilots must be on board. Perhaps in your case the pilots did not complete their exterior checks until after you boarded. With the focus on T-0, I'm sure GAs get a lot of pressure to get the aircraft boarded as quickly as they can.
True, I have been on many a flight over the years, in which I am one of the first to board, I look outside, and the pilot is still walking around.
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Old Jul 25, 18, 12:23 pm
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Originally Posted by s0ssos View Post
Actually, the captain is probably the one who knows the least about the cabin. The captain barely spends any time there. It is like asking drivers to rate the comfortability of the backseat of vehicles they have driven. I have no idea, because I never sit in the back of all my rentals.
I wonder if the captain was overreacting. Out of touch.
The Captain might know the least about the cabin, but I promise you he knows more about the external/internal HVAC systems on the aircraft.
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Old Jul 25, 18, 1:11 pm
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Originally Posted by LARobinson View Post
My wife and I boarded DL 1608 ATL-DTW and settled in to F and noticed that the aircraft was a little warm, but not unbearable, When zone 1 was just starting to board the captain stopped people in the jet bridge and then told everyone to collect their belongings and get off the plane because it was too hot. Moments after that the air came on. The captain went up the jet bridge turning people around and one of the flight attendants told everyone to stay seated, that she was going to over rule the captain. She went up the jet bridge, apparently to try to reason with the captain but she was unsuccessful, the captain stormed back from the jet bridge and sternly ordered everyone off the plane.

It was chaos with everyone having to scan off, and about 20 people lined up at the counter trying to rebook flights because they were going to miss their connection. Despite all of the chaos the gate agents and flight attendants performed great and made the best of the really bad situation that the captain created.

I had to call and get re-booked and we ended up having to go through AMS to get to CDG.

Iím sure the captain had a reason for what he did but it clearly wasnít in the best interest of DL or the passengers. Does anyone have any ideas of why he would do this?
How long ago was this...just curious. Not seeing a DL1608 from ATL to DTW.
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Old Jul 25, 18, 1:15 pm
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Originally Posted by gernabae View Post
The Captain might know the least about the cabin, but I promise you he knows more about the external/internal HVAC systems on the aircraft.
Right, and most likely there was some other issue, not just about the air in the cabin. It's likely the other issue was also the cause of the air problem, but the air problem wasn't the only problem.

Very bizarre that an FA would attempt to overrule a captain, especially directly to passengers. This isn't good for Delta or the passengers.
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Old Jul 25, 18, 1:18 pm
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Originally Posted by OHDL1 View Post
How long ago was this...just curious. Not seeing a DL1608 from ATL to DTW.
DL operated the flight from June 8th to July 7th this year, so it had to be between these dates that it happened.
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Old Jul 25, 18, 1:21 pm
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"How long ago was this...just curious. Not seeing a DL1608 from ATL to DTW."
May 23rd. 2:22PM, it was 1608 when I booked it, at some point it changed to 902
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Old Jul 25, 18, 1:28 pm
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Originally Posted by jetsfan92588 View Post
Right, and most likely there was some other issue, not just about the air in the cabin. It's likely the other issue was also the cause of the air problem, but the air problem wasn't the only problem.

Very bizarre that an FA would attempt to overrule a captain, especially directly to passengers. This isn't good for Delta or the passengers.
I think the reason the FA was bold enough to "over rule"(her words) the captain was because what is was doing was so absurd and unreasonable and she probably thought she could reason with him.
I thanked her for trying to intercede, and I gave her one of this "exceptional service" slips. I also told Delta when I talked to them on the phone about it that everyone involved, except the captain, acted professionally and did everything they could to make a bad situation better.
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Old Jul 25, 18, 1:40 pm
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The pilots do not need to be on the airplane for boarding...only the FA's do. The pilots just have to get all their prep done prior to departure (obviously), but FAR's state how many FAs must be onboard when there are pax's on the plane.

As to why the CA did what he did, I have no idea. However, it might not have just been a hot cabin but something related or something else entirely. I had an aircraft once that developed a leak in the ducting that maintenance told us was a hazard and that we had to deplane to keep the pax's safe. There are many reasons why...but then again, he could have been a kook, lol.
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